Davey Johnson says Chien-Ming Wang “is doing very well” and could return this month

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Chien-Ming Wang has looked good enough throwing off a mound in extended spring training that he could be ready to join the Nationals’ rotation later this month, according to manager Davey Johnson.

Johnson told James Wagner of the Washington Post that Wang “is doing very well” in his recovery from a hamstring injury and “is ahead of the program.”

Assuming that Wang can avoid a setback it’ll be interesting to see what the Nationals do once he’s healthy, as they demoted John Lannan to Triple-A even though Wang was on the DL and opted to go with Ross Detwiler as the No. 5 starter.

Cubs sign infielder Daniel Descalso

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The Chicago Cubs have signed free agent infielder Daniel Descalso. The deal is for two years and is worth $5 million, with a club option for 2021 that could bring the total overall value to $8.25 million.

Descalso, 32, has spent the past two seasons in Arizona. Before that he spent two years with the Rockies. He began his career with the Cardinals, playing in St. Louis for five seasons. He’s a career .240/.324/.370 hitter (85 OPS+) who can cover multiple positions. Indeed, in 2018 alone he played first, second, third, left field, DH and he even pitched twice. In his career he has also played a great deal of shortstop, though not regularly for a couple of years.

In an age of short benches and big bullpens, it pays to have a super utility guy. Descalso may not be Marwin Gonzalez as far as quality goes, but he’s just as flexible a lot more affordable. That’s worth at least something.